What is selling in increments?
Selling in increments should not be confused with a minimum purchase requirement. For example, if someone must buy at least 3 of an item, but can buy 3, 4, 5, or more, that is a minimum purchase requirement (Minimum/Maximum Order Quantity field on page one of each product setup). If a product can only be purchased in increments of 3, for example, where a shopper can only buy 3, 6, 9, etc., then you are selling in increments and this article applies.
Setup Methods for Selling in Increments
There are two methods to create products in Nexternal that are to be sold in increments. When to use each of these methods will depend upon the product’s contents, where inventory is being managed, what customer experience is desired, and what set up steps the merchant prefers.
For the examples below for each of the methods, assume two scenarios:
a) Juice scenario: you sell 2-qt cartons of orange juice to retailers by the case (8 cartons in a case). When a retailer orders, they must buy in pallet increments, so in increments of 75 cases (case counts of 75, 150, 225, etc.) Assume further that you manage inventory by the case, not by the carton.
b) Wine scenario: you sell wine to consumers only in 3-packs, (bottle counts of 3, 6, 9, 12, etc.) but you manage inventory by the bottle.
“Purchase Set Quantity” method: Create a Product, and on that product implement a Purchase Set Quantity. (Purchase Set Quantity field on page one of each product setup)
Setup: 1 step
Juice scenario: Create “Case of 8 Cartons (75 cases per pallet)” product and enter a purchase set qty of 75.
Wine scenario: Create “Cabernet 3-Pack” product and enter a purchase set qty of 3.
To set up the Purchase Set Quantity on any product, you may wish to follow the steps in the Guided Tutorial called "Set Up Products to Sell in Increments". (Guided Tutorials are accessed separately from the Support Center in Foundry, through the link to Guided Tutorials in the system navigation. In the legacy standalone version of Nexternal they can be accessed through the Guided Tutorials link in the left navigation.)
Customer Experience: When that product is displayed on the detail page, there will be a note that the product must be purchased in increments of 75 or 3, in the examples above. The qty 75 or 3 will display in the qty box on the product detail page, and if ordered, 75 cases of juice, or 3 bottles of wine, will show up in the cart. If someone tries to order fewer than 75 or 3, or in increments other than in 75’s or 3’s, the cart will be amended to 75 or 3 (or an increment of those), and they will get a popup notice/warning that this has happened.
a. This method applies ONLY to sets that include multiples of a single specific product. It cannot be used if, for example, there are mixed juice flavors in the pallet, or mixed wine flavors in the 3-pack.
b. This method is REQUIRED if:
(i) a merchant is managing inventory in a 3rd-party system (ERP, accounting package, etc.) and is digitally transferring order data from Nexternal to that 3rd-party system through Transaction Manager or another API integration, AND
(ii) if the 3rd party system does not accommodate kitting or bundling. (in other words, for example, if the 3rd party system cannot be set up to know that when it receives a Case product with SKU 123, that it must decrement 12 units of SKU X from inventory because there are 12 units in every case)
c. This method involves a much easier set up for the merchant (no inventory “kitting” required).
d. If your product has attributes, you may set up the Purchase Set Quantity on the SKU level.
e. Note the different customer experiences between this method and the Bundled Product method (below).
f. This method may be used in circumstances other than the required scenario in b. above. Whether a merchant chooses to use this in other scenarios depends upon the setup method the merchant prefers, and the customer experience the merchant wishes to provide in the online store.
“Bundled Product” method: Create a single product, then create a bundled product (a 75-case pallet, or a 3-pack product, for example), and for inventory purposes, “kit” the bundled product in Nexternal to the single product it contains.
Setup: 3 steps:
Juice scenario: Create product called “Case of 8 Cartons”, Create product called “Pallet of 75 8-Carton Cases”, and kit the Pallet product to the Case product so that when one Pallet is sold, 75 Cases are decremented from inventory.
Wine scenario: Create single bottle of Cabernet product, Create product called “Cabernet 3-pack”, and kit the 3-pack to the single bottle product so that when one 3-pack is sold, 3 bottles of Cabernet are decremented from inventory.
Customer Experience: When a Pallet or 3-pack is ordered, the number 1 (instead of 3 or 75) will show up in the qty box on the product detail page, and the product qty in the cart will show up as a unit of one Pallet or one 3-pack (not 75 cases or 3 bottles, like the Purchase Set Qty method). If someone wants 150 Cases of Juice, or 6 bottles of wine, they would order 150 or 6, not 1 or 2, like in the Purchase Set Qty method.
a. This method applies to both (i) sets that include multiples of a single product (ie: case of a single wine, or a case of 8 cartons of orange juice), and (ii) sets that include varied products (ie: mixed case of several wines.)
b. This method MUST be used for sets that include varied products (ie: mixed case of several wines.)
c. If your product has attributes, you may set up the kit(s) on the SKU level.
d. This method requires kitting only if inventory is being managed in Nexternal. It doesn’t require kitting if the merchant is not managing inventory in Nexternal (and in this case it also doesn’t require creating the single product – just the set/bundled product.) For example, if you want to sell a 12-bottle case of wine and you are not managing inventory in Nexternal, then simply create a product called Case of Wine, explain in the description that it’s 12 bottles, and you’re done (or use the Purchase Set Qty method if it’s 12 bottles of the same wine.)
Kitting is a mechanism that is used only when you want to tell the system, in this scenario, that 12 bottles of wine for each case sold, should be decremented from the inventory of that wine, which is managed in Nexternal by the bottle, not by the case.